Mr. Versatility: Conor Sheary Has Become A Vital Component of the Capitals’ Lineup

John McCreary/NHLI via Getty Images

Washington Capitals General Manager Brian MacLellan is renowned for his willingness to add depth to bolster his team’s roster, and in many instances, these additions have paid dividends in their respective tenures with the team (see names such as Brett Connolly, Devante Smith-Pelly, Nic Dowd, among others). The most recent name that could be added to that list? Forward Conor Sheary.

Signed to a one-year, $735, 000 deal in December 2020, the former Pittsburgh Penguin and Buffalo Sabre impressed in his inaugural campaign in the District, recording 14 goals and 22 points in 53 Games Played, while establishing himself as a player available to Head Coach Peter Laviolette in just about any situation (mostly offensive) and on any line in which he is needed. Sheary’s steady play led to the Capitals signing him to a two-year contract extension. In 2021-22, that faith has paid dividends in a season in which the team has been beset by injuries, games missed due to coronavirus, and a rut of poor play to start 2022.

On March 5, Sheary scored two goals on three shots against the Seattle Kraken, finished with a plus-1 rating, and two blocked shots in 13:23 of ice time. Sheary’s first goal came on the power play, and his second with an empty-net. The second goal marked his 100th career goal and 200th career point.

After the game, Sheary was awarded the post-game axe (given by the precious recipient to the game’s offensive player of the game).

“It’s kind of a weird way to get your hundredth [speaking of the empty-net goal] but I’ll take it. Sometimes I think those milestones can get in your head a little bit so to get a nice, easy one was probably the best way to do it”.

Sheary’s power play marker continued a revitalized unit that has awakened from a prolonged lack of productivity, and marked his second power play goal of the season.

“I think we obviously got a few bodies back, we got Osh [T.J. Oshie] back, we got Mo [Anthony Mantha] back, Backy’s [Nicklas Backstrom] kind of finding his stride so I think we feel like we have two really good units that can work hard, use our skill to create opportunities. I think we have a lot more of a shot mindset, Ovi’s scoring from his office, but I think we’re scoring a lot of goals from net-front, which is key to a power play and I think it’s really been helping us the last few games”.

Sheary’s third, multi-point game of the season also gives him seven points (three goals, four assists) in his past seven games, during which time he has averaged 14:38 of ice time and has recorded a 20.0 Shot Percentage. Since the start of 2022 (during which time the Capitals’ struggled to play consistently), Sheary has 13 points (seven goals, six assists) in 20 games, averaged 15:18 of ice time, and on the season, has averaged 2:10 of power play time (eighth on the team), and ranks fifth in takeaways.

In 47 Games Played this season, Sheary has recorded 14 goals (fourth on the Capitals), 14 assists (sixth) 28 points (fifth). His career-highs offensively are 23 goals, 30 assists, and 53 points, which came during the 2016-17 season with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

By Michael Fleetwood

About Michael Fleetwood

Michael Fleetwood was born into a family of diehard Capitals fans and has been watching games as long as he can remember. He was born the year the Capitals went to their first Stanley Cup Final, and is a diehard Caps fan, the owner of the very FIRST Joe Beninati jersey and since then, has met Joe himself. His favorite player became former Capital Nate Schmidt after he met Schmidt in a Hershey hotel while in Hershey PA to see the Bears play, shortly after Schmidt was injured during a conditioning stint. Michael is also a fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Orioles, and enjoys photography, watching WildEarth TV's SafariLive live safaris, and watching animals in his spare time. (Photo by Adam Vingan in 2014 at the Capitals Development Camp).
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1 Response to Mr. Versatility: Conor Sheary Has Become A Vital Component of the Capitals’ Lineup

  1. redLitYogi says:

    only 674 more to catch Ovechkin!

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